Following on from the success of our first Irish History Talk Series in 2011 and in keeping with the promotion of Irish heritage and culture, the Irish Diaspora Foundation brings to you a series of talks that deal with a wide range of topics relating to Irish history and cultural events.
This series of talks will commence on Wednesday 18th April 2012 at 8.00pm with the last talk taking place on Wednesday 11th July. This series of talks will be delivered by a wide variety of specialists from all over the Northwest of England. This is not intended to be a comprehensive review of Irish History but is intended to focus on particular events and milestones of the time.
Each talk starts at 8:00pm, there is a booking fee of £3 per talk.
Weds 18th April
Donal Maguire - Michael Davitt - Triumph over adversity
Donal’s current major project centres round the legendary Michael Davitt, the supreme political organiser, social reformer and egalitarian, who migrated to Haslingden (where, coincidentally, Donal has lived since 1978) as a boy from Mayo in the 1800’s.
Donal Maguire has been singing and playing in public on and off for forty years. He is now playing on a full-time basis. Donal toured “Triumph over Adversity” in Ireland and the UK in 2006. After the highly successful inaugural presentation in Haslingden, the show was performed at the prestigious Parnell Summer School in Avondale, Co. Wicklow.
Weds 2nd May
Lance Pettitt - The Last Dance for Emigration
Lance’s lecture will look at the award-winning film The Ballroom of Romance (1982), adapted from a short story by William Trevor. Trevor set the original story during a period of relentless emigration from a rural parish though it was actually published in 1972. The television production was the result of a not always happy coproduction between RTE and the BBC, but the finished film is a beautifully poignant piece that is as relevant to today’s conditions as it was thirty years ago.
Professor Lance Pettitt, St Mary’s University College, London, is the author of Screening Ireland (Manchester UP, 2013 2nd ed.) and co-editor of a series ‘Ireland on Film: Screenplays and Critical Essays’ (Humanitas, Sao Paulo) which will feature The Ballroom of Romance as its next title.
Weds 16th May
Brian Lawlor - The Golden Era of Ceílí Music and dance 1955 -1970
Brian Lawler has completed a 5 year audio archive project which was completed in conjunction with the Irish Traditional Music Archive in Dublin. During the period 1999 to 2004, Brian recorded interviews with 70 people associated with the period, including Ceílí band founders and members, Promoters, Dancers, and Radio Personnel. He recorded a total of 42 hours of material. As founder of the Ardellis Ceílí Band, Brian was actively involved himself on the road with the Ardellis. He gave his first presentation on the project in the John Burns Library in Boston College in 2005.
Weds 13th June
Gerry Smyth - Betrayal in Irish Cultural History
This talk offers an analysis of the role of treason and betrayal in Irish cultural history during the modern era, against the backdrop of the collapse of the Celtic Tiger. It is based on a forthcoming book entitled The Judas Kiss: Treason and Betrayal in the Modern Irish Novel (Manchester University Press).
Gerry Smyth is an academic, musician and actor from Dublin, now living and working in Liverpool. Besides publishing widely on various aspects of Irish cultural history, he has discussed Irish affairs on numerous television and radio programmes for RTE and the BBC.
Weds 27th June
Yvonne Whelan - Landscapes of Ireland: Spectacle, Performance and Memory
For cultural geographers landscape has long been a key preoccupation and approaches to its study have changed markedly over time. In this talk Yvonne will reflect on the nexus of inquiry that has recently coalesced around landscape and politics. She will focus on two case studies which will demonstrate that the materiality of landscape matters and that landscape is much more than a passive backdrop for the representation of the past.
Yvonne Whelan is a Senior Lecturer in Human Geography at Bristol University. She has also been the visiting Professor at various International Universities. Her research explores the relationships between landscape, memory and identity in modern Ireland.
Weds 11th July
Kerri O’Brien - Enduring myths and magic of Irish Folklore
Kerri will to explore the enduring myths and magic of Irish Folklore, in particular the figure of the Banshee and other portents of death. Long believed to accompany the emigrant, she will consider The Banshees her relevance and meaning from a new perspective.
Having graduated from the Department of Irish Folklore at University College Dublin, Kerri O’Brien trekked the west coast of Ireland with Irish Folklore Tours and has spent the last ten years working in the adult education sector in the heart of Dublin’s Liberties.
For further information or to book your place on any of the talks, please contact Margot Power on 0161 202 1200 or margot(at)iwhc.com